Reference Process Model for IT System Integration for Transshipment Terminals

The aim of this research project is to develop an IT reference model especially tailored for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the field of application of cargo handling terminals. This should support the terminals in independently carrying out a systematic further development of their IT and process landscape.

Project duration
01.05.2019 – 31.08.2021
Project funding
Industrial Collective Research project funded by Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy
Our status
Responsible AiF reseach institute
Contact person
Michaela Grafelmann
Project partnersThe project is supported by experienced companies from the logistics sector on the project committee.


Cargo handling terminals are characterized by diverse customer relationships, services and organizational interfaces. Large terminals use extensive and expensive terminal operating systems (TOS) to meet these challenges. These systems are often out of the question for SME terminals due to the very large scope of functions, the high adaptation effort to operational circumstances and the associated high costs for acquisition, adaptation, maintenance and further development. In SME cargo handling terminals, various small, sometimes self-developed IT solutions are used and processes are often carried out without suitable IT support, e.g. by accepting many inefficient and error-prone media breaks. In order to further develop these IT and business process landscapes, which are characterised by isolated IT solutions, redundancies and purely paper-based processing sequences, in the sense of a future-oriented digitalisation and thus to build up agility with regard to changing framework conditions and requirements for digital interfaces to partners in the maritime transport chain, SME cargo handling terminals usually lack capital and personnel.

The research project is intended to remedy this situation with a "help for self-help" approach. The IT reference process model with its process models, tools and recommendations for action forms the basis for this. Such a reference model, which is geared to the specifics of SME terminals, is not yet available and represents an innovation. The project, which is divided into seven work packages and planned to run for two years, will provide intensive feedback with the various companies involved. This will ensure that the developed aids are practically applicable and useful for the SME transshipment terminals.

The Industrial Collective Research project "Reference Process Model for IT System Integration for Transshipment Terminals" (20720 N) of the research association Bundesvereinigung Logistik e.V. was funded by

in the scope of the Industrial Collective Research project of the

on the basis of a resolution of the German Bundestag.